Let me start with this has been the most stressful and bizarre week concerning our horse. It was not hard to tell something was wrong with her right away. Laying down not wanting or able to get up very well. Stiffness or soreness in her hind end lethargic/depressed and not wanting to drink water. Problem was none of these symptoms really matched up to many if any known problems.
We consulted books/ the internet with still no idea what was going on, after 24 hrs with no improvement we called the vet. They didn’t see it as an emergency with what we had presented as symptoms so set an appointment for the next day. Vet came out and checked her over and really could not find anything more then her needing a good feet trim. (We already knew this and had it planned)
We all assumed this would fix her up so the farrier came out and cleaned her feet up. He told us they where actually not in that bad of shape and should not have been causing as much pain as she seemed to be in. He too noticed how sore her hind end was, but really had no other ideas what might be wrong.
We consulted several of our horse friends and they where all as perplexed as we where as to what was causing our horse so much distress.
Then tonight as we where checking her over we noticed some hair missing on the backs of her legs right where we had put some Celebration Spot on fly drops the very morning of the day she started showing symptoms. It got us thinking I wounder if that has anything to do with it. So again we jumped online. What we found is very disturbing. Follows are just some of the reviews we came across.
“Two of the horses in our barn have had this same reaction within 12 to 24 hours of using these topicals to prevent ticks. Both horses became very depressed and lethargic. They both also exhibited neurological symptoms of muscle weakness or some kind of hind limb motor control problem as they had trouble walking behind and holding themselves up at times. To make sure it was not something else or a fluke we tried it again 2 weeks later with the same reaction. (never again)!
I assume these are signs of some type of toxicity to the chemicals used in these products. One horse also had a skin reaction and limb swelling, the other did not but also showed the same neurological symptoms. Symptoms went away several days later. Pretty Scary!! With lymes rampant in our area we are at a loss now as how to protect them. One horse had the same reaction to Ovatrol also.
Our vet has not heard of this type of reaction other than skin allergies to these products so I was wondering if anyone else or vet had also occured this type of reaction and if so any input would be great!”
“Owners treated two horses, only one had a reaction. He was bay and this was the first time they used it.
He nearly fell over when touched- ripped down cross ties, went 100% wild.
His skin hurt all over.
Vet came right out, tried to wash it off (using dish soap I believe?).
Contacted manufacturer, used DMSO IV, anything they could to help the horse clear it’s system quicker.
The horse remained incredibly sensitive to the touch.
He also quickly developed a light sensitivity, he wouldn’t come out of his shed during the day at all.
It was about 4-8 weeks later, he was only slightly better, when the owners moved him to another barn that was better for him (able to keep him inside more).
It was thousands of dollars in vet bills and the manufacturer was working with the vet and absorbing the majority of the cost of treatment.”
“I too had heard about the citronella in equi spot so I thought that might be the problem as that is what I used first and when she starting to show some symptoms and developed swelling all along the area it was applied. I bought the freedom 45 and waited two weeks and did a test patch and there was no reaction so I thought that citronella was the problem and we were good to go. I applied the rest of the freedom 45 and although she never developed any skin reaction to it along her topline, sure enough within 24 hours she developed swelling in her legs got very lethargic and depressed and started showing neurological signs. So unfortunately at least for her both products are a problem. The other horse in the barn that had problems also only had been given equispot.”
Needless to say these products are Nerotoxions and can cause any number of adverse affects on your horse and not all happen when you spot test or even when you first start using the products so please please be very careful using these products. Our horse is not completely over this but having found the cause of her discomfort and knowing these symptoms should pass has been a great relief to us. On a very sad note the product did not help with the flys all that much.